Saturday, December 31, 2011

top substance abuse stories of 2011

the top 10 from;

1. Government Cracks Down on "Fake Cocaine" Bath Salts

One of the biggest drug abuse issues of the year involved an increase in emergency room visits by young people using products sold as "bath salts," which are basically fake cocaine. After several states began to ban the sale of the products, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration banned the chemicals used to make fake cocaine nationwide.

2. Survey Shows Large Increase in Marijuana Smokers

When the latest government study indicated a huge 20% increase in the number of Americans 12 and older who said they smoke marijuana, the question arose as to whether this reflected an actual increase in smokers or did it reflect whether changing attitudes caused more people to admit they smoke weed. Regardless, illegal drug use in general is increasing.

3. Florida Begins Drug-Testing Welfare Recipients

In one of the most controversial moves of the year, Florida became the first state to initiate drug screening for all adults applying for the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program. Applicants will have to pay to take the drug screening tests and will be reimbursed if they qualify for the program

4. Singer Amy Winehouse Dead at 27

British singer Amy Winehouse's long battle with substance abuse came to an end when she was found dead in her London home. Family members speculated that she died as a result of severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms, but her autopsy revealed that she had a fatal blood-alcohol level at the time of her death.

5. "No Refusal" Strategy Stops Drunk Drivers

Law enforcement officials across the nation found a new tool in the crackdown on drunken drivers. By having judges on call during "no refusal" campaigns, officers can quickly get warrants to take blood samples from drivers who refuse to submit to breathalyzer tests.

6. Hepatitis C Cases Decline Dramatically

Injection-drug users still make up about 46% of all newly diagnosed cases of acute hepatitis C, but new cases of the virus have declined by 90% between 1994 and 2006, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Clean blood supply and safe needle-exchange programs were credited with the dramatic drop.

7. Using Medical Marijuana Can Get You Fired

A federal judge ruled that employers have the right to fire employees who test positive for marijuana even if they live in a state where medical marijuana is legal and they have a prescription to use the drug for a legitimate medical purpose.

8. Florida Cracks Down on "Pill Mills"

A new Florida law established a prescription drug-monitoring database system to fight the state's huge oxycodone sales problem. The system will be funded by local law enforcement agencies using forfeiture funds. Pharmaceutical companies are specifically forbidden to fund the monitoring system.

9. Pharmacies Enter Prescription Drug Abuse Fight

The growth in prescription drugs abuse, ruled this year as an epidemic, prompted the National Association of Chain Drug Stores to join the effort to fight the problem. The association supported steps by Congress to reduce prescription drug abuse, misuse, diversion and fraud.

10. Ecstasy Safety Campaign Draws Criticism

A safety campaign aimed at reducing harm among young Los Angeles ravers who use the drug ecstasy drew fire from critics, who claimed it was sending the wrong message. The Department of Public Health's flyers were designed to minimize potential harm, but critics said the message should be there is no safe way to use the drug.

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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

the disease concept

excellent view from Psychology Today
by Lance Dodes M.D.

For many decades it's been widely accepted that alcoholism (or addiction) is a disease.  The "disease concept" is taught in addiction training programs and told to patients in treatment programs.  It is unquestioned by public figures and the media.  But is it true?  And if it is not true, is there a better and more helpful way to define addiction?

Widespread enthusiasm for the disease model, however, has led to willingness to overlook the facts.  Addiction has very little in common with diseases.  It is a group of behaviors, not an illness on its own.  It cannot be explained by any disease process.  Perhaps worst of all, calling addiction a "disease" interferes with exploring or accepting new understandings of the nature of addiction.

But if we are to scrap the disease concept and replace it with something valid, our new explanation must retain all the beneficial aspects of the old disease idea.  It must not allow moralizing or any other negative attributions to people suffering with addictions.  In fact, we'd hope an alternative explanation would have more value than the disease label, by giving people with addictions something the disease concept lacks: an understanding that is useful for treating the problem.

Despite all its past helpfulness, then, we are better off today without the disease idea of addiction.  For too long it has served as a kind of "black box" description that explains nothing, offers no help in treatment, and interferes with recognizing newer ways to understand and treat the problem.
And there is one more advantage.  If we can eliminate the empty "disease" label, then people who suffer with an addiction can finally stop thinking of themselves as "diseased."

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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Monday quotes

Love thy neighbor as thy self, but choose thy neighborhood.
- Louise Beal

The finest kind of friendship is between people who expect a great deal of each other but never ask it.
- Sylvia Bremer

 Success is getting what you want. Happiness is liking what you get.
- H. Jackson Brown Jr.

The manner of giving is worth more than the gift.
- Pierre Corneille

I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody.
- Bill Cosby

When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself.
- Wayne Dyer

Some of us might find happiness if we quit struggling so desperately for it.
- William Feather

Life really can be so simple... You create your opportunities by asking for them.
- Patty Hansen

When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace.
- Jimi Hendrix

We sometimes get all the information, but we refuse to get the message.
- Cullen Hightower

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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

weekly roundup

celebrity substance abuse news

Brooke Mueller Enters Long-Term Treatment
Charlie's Sheen's ex wife, Brooke Mueller has checked herself into rehab after her arrest for cocaine possession and assault. "Brooke has decided to remove herself from the media spotlight so she can focus on her recovery without distraction," her spokesperson said in a statement.

Lindsay Lohan Doing Well on Probation
Superior Court Judge Stephanie Sautner praised actress Lindsay Lohan for "doing well" under the terms of her probation. Since Nov. 2, Lohan has worked 12 days at the L.A. County morgue and has completed five court-ordered therapy sessions.

Judy Collins's New Book: Suicide, Alcoholism, Nude Photos
In a new book, Sweet Judy Blue Eyes: My Life in Music, folk singer Judy Collins talks candidly about her long battle with alcoholism. "I didn’t take a lot of drugs, because I thought they would interfere with my drinking," the legendary singer admits.

Charlie Bell Shows Up Drunk at DUI Court Date
Golden State Warriors guard Charlie Bell was arrested last week when he showed up in Flint, Michigan for a hearing on his October DUI charge he was intoxicated. Authorities said Bell was over the legal limit when he arrived in court. He spent several hours in custody.

Mitchel Musso Pleads Not Guilty to DUI
Hannah Montana movie star Mitchel Musso has entered a not guilty plea to driving under the influence. The underage actor had a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 when he was stopped for failing to slow down near a traffic crash site.

Bears Receiver Sam Hurd Arrested on Drug Charges
Chicago Bears receiver Sam Hurd has been arrested in a drug sting from trying to buy drugs from an informant and an undercover agent. Police said Hurd was trying to negotiate the purchase of five to 10 kilograms of cocaine and 1,000 pounds of marijuana a week.

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Monday, December 19, 2011

monday quotes

Do you wish people to think well of you? Don't speak well of yourself.
- Blaise Pascal

Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.
- General George Patton

Not what we have, but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance.
- John Petit-Senn

The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.
- John Enoch Powell

I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.
- J. B. Priestley

You can't turn back the clock. But you can wind it up again.
- Bonnie Prudden

The winds of grace are always blowing, but you have to raise the sail.
- Ramakrishna

Only as high as I reach can I grow,
Only as far as I seek can I go,
Only as deep as I look can I see,
Only as much as I dream can I be.
- Karen Ravn

A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.
- Donna Roberts

It is not fair to ask of other what you are not willing to do yourself.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

celebrity updates

the latest substance abuse news

Brooke Mueller Arrested in Aspen
Charlie Sheen's ex-wife Brooke Mueller has been arrested in Aspen, CO for assault and possession of cocaine with intent to distribute. The arrest came after a woman told police that Mueller had assaulted her in a nightclub. A court date is scheduled for Dec. 19.

Former Miss USA Arrested on DUI Charges
After first denying that she was even in Michigan, former Miss USA Rima Fakih admitted that she had been arrested for drunken driving in Highland Park. Following her arrest, Fakih tweeted "I'm NOT in Michigan and I'm NOT in jail! Wrong Fakih."

Former Miami Dolphin Busted for Drugs
Former Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Igor Olshansky got caught in a police crackdown that included 279 arrests. The 29-year-old posted a $100 bond after he was caught with 19 grams of marijuana, from which he was rolling a joint when cop arrived.

FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt Resigns After DUI
Randy Babbitt, chief of the Federal Aviation Administration, has stepped down from the position following his arrest for drunken driving in Fairfax City, VA. Police stopped Babbitt after they spotted him driving on the wrong side of the road.

Seahawk Raheem Brock Charged with Drunk Driving
Raheem Brock, defensive end for the Seattle Seahawks, will finally face charges for his November 2010 arrest for driving his Bentley at 90 mph. The case file was apparently misplaced and forgotten by police until a reporter called last week to check the status.

Math Professor, 74, Accused of Running Meth Lab
A 74-year-old Boston professor has been arrested for running a methamphetamine lab with her son out of her home. Irina Kristy was charged with distribution of meth, conspiracy to violate the drug law and drug violation in a school zone.

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Monday, December 12, 2011

monday quotes

A child needs your presence more than your presents.
- Jesse Jackson

Forgiveness is the highest and most difficult of all moral lesson.
- Joseph Jacobs

The people who try to do something and fail are infinitely better than those who try to do nothing and succeed.
- Lloyd James

 Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.
- Thomas Jefferson

The Trouble with life in the fast lane is that you get to the other end in a hurry.
- John Jensen

Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.
- Lyndon Baines Johnson

I have accepted fear as a part of life - specifically the fear of change. I have gone ahead despite the pounding in the heart that says: turn back.
- Erica Jong

Never let inexperience get in the way of ambition.
- Terry Josephson

The aim of argument, or of discussion, should not be victory, but progress.
- Joseph Joubert

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Saturday, December 10, 2011

unnecessary holiday panic

in the rooms this time of year, there
is always talk of the pressure of holidays
and the temptation to drink

well guess what, for many the thought
of a drink occurs all year long

the stress of the holidays is there for
most people, and all the fuss alky's
express during these times is unwarranted

just go with the flow; if you know you are
going to be uncomfortable, choose your
situations wisely.

no matter where you are or who you're
with the decision is up to with it

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Sunday, December 4, 2011

weekly roundup

this week's list of celeb antics

Courtney Love Is Lindsay Lohan's Sober Coach?
This could be a case of the blind leading the blind. Courtney Love, who has had her own widely publicized substance abuse meltdowns, is reportedly giving Lindsay Lohan advice on how to stay clean and sober. "I've taken up Lohan because nobody else will. She's further down the line than I was, because there was no TMZ then," Love said.

Griffin O'Neal Pleads Guilty to DUI
Another son of actor Ryan O'Neal is in trouble for substance abuse. Griffin O'Neal has pleaded guilty to driving under the influence and possession of a firearm by a felon after a head-on crash which injured another driver. Police said he was high when he veered into on-coming traffic.

Lil Boosie Gets 8 Years in Drug Case
Baton Rouge rapper "Lil Boosie," whose real name is Torrence Hatch, has been sentenced to eight years on drug charges. He pleaded guilty to trying to smuggle codeine, marijuana and ecstasy into prison where he was already serving time.

D.A. Vows Hard Line on Former Convict
Prosecutors have vowed to treat drunk driving charges very seriously against a man who was once prosecuted as a juvenile on homicide charges. Assistant District Attorney Patrick Carmody said he will "take very seriously" the DUI charges against Sean O. O'Neill Jr.

Doctor Accused of Selling Oxycodone Out of His Car
A New York doctor has surrendered to authorities to face federal charges of illegally selling prescriptions for oxycodone. Investigators said 60-year-old Dr. Leonard Stambler was driving around in his car delivering prescriptions for powerful pain killers to his clients.

Drunk Driver Hits Two Police Cars
It probably didn't take long for El Paso police to figure out that Marco Antonio Medina was driving while intoxicated. The 32-year-old crashed his vehicle into two police cars that were blocking the center lane of Mesa Street.

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